Participate

Competition started in November 17th 2019, 2 pm (GMT). If you missed the beginning of the competition, you can also register (and start solving the active problem) at any later stage.

Eligibility and registration

There are two official age groups: pre-university, and university. Anyone who qualifies for the next IPhO qualifies also for the pre-university age group. All BSc and MSc students of any university qualify for the university age group.

To register, please fill this Registration Form
If you are from China mainland and cannot access this form, please register by sending e-mail to physcs.cup@gmail.com and indicate: your given name, surname, school or university, date of birth, country, physics teacher’s name (if in high school), and optionally full mailing address (to be used if you get a prize).

Submitting the solutions

All solutions are to be sent by email to physcs.cup@gmail.com. Please use the subject line “Problem No 1” (“Problem No 2”, etc), exactly as written here; the phrase “Problem No” anywhere within the subject line triggers an automatic reply confirming your submission. You are advised to submit the answer as fast as you can, but not later than the publication time of the next problem. Since there is a speed bonus, you can first submit only the answer. In that case, you need to submit a full solution within the next 48 hours (failing to do so invalidates your answer-only submission).

Accepted formats

LaTeX, PDF, MsWord, jpg. You can scan (or take a photo) of your hand-written solution, or write it in LaTeX (recommended) or MsWord. You can produce also a semi-LaTeX text – a simple text file/e-mail using LaTeX syntax for formulae (e.g. m=m_0/\sqrt{1-v^2/c^2}).

The first 10 correct answers (supplemented later with a complete solution) receive a bonus factor according to the formula $k = 1.1^{11−n}$, where n is the order number. The best solution will receive a bonus factor of e = 2.718 . . . and will be published as the official solution at the web page. If there are several equally good “best solutions”, this bonus factor can be shared (for instance, in the case of two “best solutions”, each will get a factor of $e^{1/2}$). If there are other good solutions which (due to certain reasons, e.g. the usage of a significantly different approach) deserve publication, these will be also published and will receive a bonus factor of 1.1. Chances of getting your solution published will be increased if you document your solution well, and write it down nicely (e.g. in LaTeX; a good scan of a clean hand-written work is OK, too).
There is also an additional rule for those who send many incorrect solutions before finding a correct one: if the product of all the factors (penalty and bonus) gives a number which is smaller than $e^{−2/3}$, the score $e^{−2/3}$ is used, instead.